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IDB Holding announces deferralvof Series Dalet bond payments

IDB Holding announced yesterday that it would be deferring a payment on its Series Dalet bonds that was due to be made in May until July. As a result bondholders will now need to decide whether to take legal action or accept the debt rescheduling agreement struck between the company and bondholder representatives, which has not yet been given final approval. [See commentary on page 9]. All told, IDB Holding owes its bondholders NIS 1.8 billion in addition to NIS 260 million in bank debt to Bank Leumi and Credit Suisse. The rescheduling plan calls for bondholders to receive NIS 400 million now with additional payments of NIS 1.56 billion spread over 14 years. (Shelly Appelberg)

U.K. delegation visits Leviathan gas field

The British Minister for Trade and Investment, Lord Stephen Green, visited the Leviathan gas drilling site off Israel’s coast Tuesday with a British business delegation, TheMarker has learned. The group was hosted by Yitzhak Tshuva, the controlling shareholder of the Delek Group, which is a partner at Leviathan. The minister is well known in the international business community, having previously served as CEO and chairman of the HSBC financial group. The delegation’s visit was designed to explore cooperation between the Leviathan partnerships and the British business community both on the operational level and with respect to financing as well as possible British investment in Israeli oil and gas exploration projects.

The British delegation was comprised of 12 senior officials from the oil and gas sector. Trade between Britain and Israel last year exceeded 4 billion pounds, about NIS 22 billion. (Eran Azran)

Tax Authority stages raids in Moshav Rishpon, Caesarea

More than 50 Tax Authority investigators staged a raid this week on Moshav Rishpon north of Herzliya in an effort to catch tax evaders. The investigators spent hours in the community and visited a large number of properties where the owners were suspected of not declaring income to the tax authorities. Much of the information came from a Tax Authority hotline that enables members of the public to provide anonymous tips on tax evaders. In the Rishpon raid, the Tax Authority said the focus of its attention was commercial and residential rental property from which rental income was not reported for tax purposes. Last week the Tax Authority staged a similar raid in Caesarea further up the Mediterranean coast. (Nimrod Bousso)

Drilling at the Leviathan natural gas field off the Mediterranean shore. Credit: Courtesy Albatross